According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), cancer is the second cause of death in the U.S., following heart disease.

Cancer fundamentally affects the way in which cells grow and divide, resulting in them growing uncontrollably and destroying normal body tissue. All cancer is a result of damage or genetic mutations in our DNA.

There are certain types of cancers that grow out of control and spread due to genetic defects or are incited by genetic changes. However, aside from the genetic factors that we are predisposed to, there are also certain things in our environment that put us at a higher risk of cancer. Factors such as breathing in certain substances, eating specific things, and even using some kinds of plastics increase the risk of developing deadly cancers.

Here are some known carcinogens, as well as other things that scientists are suggesting are cancer-causing culprits.

20. Sugar


Eating too much sugar is known to cause diabetes, but also actively damages your cells and increases the risk of developing cancer. However, that’s not all. Recent research suggests that sugar may fuel tumor growth because cancer uses sugar to spread. “The hyperactive sugar consumption of cancerous cells to a vicious cycle of continued stimulation of cancer development and growth,” said Johan Thevelein, a Belgian molecular biologist, after the release of his study. The research allows for a better understanding of how sugar and cancer interact and help future patients with a targeted diet.

19. Processed Foods

Processed Foods

It’s no secret that any food served in a plastic wrapper, industrially sealed, or designed to last months without spoiling can serve as a great on-the-go fix when hunger calls, but also greatly increases the risk of cancer. French scientists recently found a link between people who eat more processed foods and those who develop cancer. Scientists are not sure whether the problem is the preservative ingredients, the plastic packaging, or a combination of the two, and since the study was correlative, there is a possibility that there are other hidden factors.


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